Motivation is important for the success of not only a company but the employees that make up a company. Finding what motivates employees is important but what keeps an employee from being motivated and hinders success is just as important. Outside factors or home factors play a key role in this determining an individual’s success in their work environment. Finances are important and if an employee is struggling with finances, these frustrations can start to show in their work.
“The key to motivation is identifying what makes someone tick.” (Economic, 2002) Some common motivators include career advancement and financial gain. Financial gain or finances can be a motivational factor but can also hinder employees if the issues with finances are outside the work environment. With the struggling economy, having financial security is an idea of the past for many employees.
Employees with financial problems can find themselves frustrated and un- motivated at work. Leading to non-productivity in the work place leading to even more frustration and lack of motivation. This can become a negative cycle over time. Financial problems can consist of credit card debit, unable to pay bills and short on money due to excessive spending or lack of budgeting. Although these can all be prevented they still lead to problems if presented in an outside work environment.
From personal experience, right out of college financial issues were in abundance when I found myself over my head in bills and spending way beyond my means. I had a great job working for a major office supply chain in their corporate office but felt unfulfilled and unsuccessful when it came to the end of the day and had to face the situation at home. I learned that once I started to fix my financial situation I was promoted and more dedicated to my work. This shows the truthfulness of both Maslow’s and ERG theories.
Financial Motivation Related to Theories
Considering Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, financial security falls under physical and safety levels of the model. (Baack, 2012) Physical in that if you are financial secure you are able to get what you need to survive. This can help you feel safe. These are both low on the list of five areas of progress. Since these are on the low spectrum of the progress model financial security is important when it comes to professional motivation. (Baack, 2012) Alderfer’s ERG theory is similar to Maslow’s in the placement of financial security. In this model physical and safety are combined into one listed as existence. Like Maslow’s if an individual has reached the physical or existence area of the hierarchy they can move on to relatedness. (Baack, 2012) When an employee has insecurities or issues with finances they have a hard time moving on from this area of hierarchy leading to more issues and a harder time succeeding in all areas of their life.
With personal finances, when I focused on that area of my life and continued to not fix it I found I was drowning and in a cycle that had no ending. Once I started to use incentives and focused on my goals and budget I found that I started to move past the physical or existence areas of hierarchy and was able to start working on the emotional or esteem parts of the hierarchy. (Baack, 2012) This motivated me to achieve more success and become more productive in my job position.
Intervention/Action. To help individuals or employees avoid or alleviate financial insecurities is financial incentives. Providing motivation that can help solve the problem is one step in helping employees become productive. The important thing to consider when it comes to incentives is the foundation in how they are set up and given out. One idea is to give managers responsibility and accountability for awarding increases or awards rather than Human Resources. (Katz, 1998) When given by a manager or supervisor who is directly associated